This page is an overview of the sceince projects that I was involved with on our January 2015 trip to King George Island with INACH, the Chilean Antarctic Program. I was working with two Chilean scientists on this trip -
Angelica Casanova-Katny and Gustavo Zuniga.
Angelica is from Centro de Biotecnología, Universidad de Concepción.
Gustavo is from the University of Santiago, Chile and his projects for this trip were....
Here is my introduction to the work from the field site at Collins Glacier on Maxwell Bay.
We also worked with a team of scientists from Portland State University including Dr Todd Rosentiel and Dr Sarah Eppley. Here is Todd talking about one part of his research.
In January of 2015 I went down to Chile's Escudero Base on King George Island with the Chilean Antarctic Program - INASCH. I was working with Angélica Casanova Katny of the Universidad de Concepción and Professor Gustavo Zuniger from Santiago University. My partner Andrew Netherwood accompanied us as the expedition photographer on this trip and most of the photos you see on this page are taken by him.
This page is mostly about King George Island and Escudero Base where we stayed. For the science projects that we were attempting to accomplish see this page.
Antarctic Plants and Global Change
An Overview of my Antarctic Research Projects
Since plant growth in Antarctica is very slow, we use a range of molecular and physiological techniques to predict how terrestrial biodiversity in Antarctica will change as a result of climate change.
Our work is providing important insights into the biology of these plants that survive and grow in conditions equivalent to a freezer. Our research provides evidence that the Antarctic endemic moss Grimmia antarctici is likely to be more susceptible to climate change than two co-occurring cosmopolitan species Ceratodon purpureus and Bryum pseudotriquetrum (Robinson et al 2005 PDF 681k, Wasley et al 2006a, b).
I am an early career biotechnologist examining the secondary metabolites and protective mechanisms of moss species that live in temperate and Antarctic regions. I recently completed my PhD in the biology and chemistry of Antarctic moss species, with a focus on their natural protective mechanisms and how old living moss shoots from Antarctica can be. I am interested in the protective mechanisms employed by plants, in particular mosses, and how they cope in different stressful situations, e.g. UV radiation, water stress and high light. My research interests include but are not limited to climate change, plant ecophysiology, radiocarbon dating and natural products spanning across many disciplines within science.
Ph: 02 4221 5373
Position: Research Associate / Associate Lecturer
Friday was my first day as a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the Institute of Advanced Studies, at the University of Birmingham. I had a wonderful welcome both from Sue Gilligan and Sarah Jeffery and over lunch with academic staff from the Schools of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences, Biosciences and Mathematics. The IAS aims to promote interdisciplinary research and it was great to see so many people connecting over lunch.
Last year in November, our group led by Barry Osmond hosted a LIFT (light induced fluorescence transient) meeting in Wollongong. The second meeting was held in Germany hosted by the Forschungszentrum Jülich IBG-2: Plant Sciences. The University of Wollongong, HRPPC at CSIRO in Canberra and the Forschungszentrum Jülich are developing protocols for measuring canopy photosynthesis using these new LIFT chlorophyll fluorometers.
The first scientific destination on this study leave trip in the spring or autumn of 2014 (depending on which hemisphere you might be in) was for a gathereing of polar peatbog scientists, which might be considered rather a niche in the scheme of things, and yet this small concentration of people proved a very good size for an intense and intimate discussion and planning session on the science of arctic and antarctic peat bogs.